Mediation For The Masses

Meditation: Health And Science



Frequently Asked Questions About Anxiety Reduction

People recognize anxiety as the most known form of mental illness. At some level, it can cause a higher risk of physical, emotional, and psychological problems. It can even last for an extended period. In some unfortunate cases, it can cause physical symptoms, including chest pain, muscle pain, heart rate changes, dizziness, and headaches. It potentially increased the risk of high blood pressure and even heart disease. It can affect your memory, cause a chemical imbalance in the brain, cause emotional turmoil, and many more.

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With all those negative symptoms, it just strengthens the reason why anxiety should be treated before it escalates into something no one would dream of having – an anxiety disorder. Learn some new information about the mental health condition with these frequently asked questions.

What is anxiety reduction therapy?

The idea of anxiety reduction lies in the goal of cognitive-behavioral therapy. It is to identify and correct the negative beliefs one has for people with anxiety disorders. Negative ways of thinking fuel the off-putting emotions of anxiety, so the idea of anxiety reduction therapy is that if you change how you think, you can change the way you feel.

Basically, it is just as simple as telling yourself to stay optimistic. Anxiety reduction therapy is somewhat comparable to what people used to call the “law of attraction.” When they think about good things, they eventually receive good things. Therefore, the more people draw closer to mental health positivity, the more they get closer to their goal.

 Can anxiety be reduced?

Yes, of course. There are methods to reduce stress and anxiety. These include behavior, thoughts, and lifestyle changes. These are, but not limited to, limiting alcohol and caffeine, eating a well-balanced diet, and taking time for yourself. Consider consulting an expert if ever symptoms persist.

Be mindful not to self-evaluate. Yes, there will be moments that you will experience unwanted symptoms, and you will immediately assume it to be an anxiety disorder. You should refrain from doing that because the tendency is that you might become absorbed with anxiety even if you don’t have a disorder. Only an expert psychiatrist and therapist can diagnose your mental health condition.

 What helps calm your anxiety?

Anxiety can come from a lot of things. To get rid of it, you can consider some of these: preparing and eating well-balanced meals, taking some time out, exercising regularly, practice breathing exercises, and spending time with friends and family. As long as you work better in keeping your thoughts away from negativity, you can benefit from these helpful tips.

But of course, not every coping method that works for others does not guarantee to work for you. You need to find the right strategy that will fit your needs. You should not rely on what others tell you, what you read on the internet, or what you believe is the proper way. Please always consult professional advice before going for some instant changes for the sake of your mental health.

 What helps anxiety naturally?

The best natural ways to reduce anxiety include: regular exercise, avoid drinking alcohol, quit smoking, drink less caffeine, practice deep breathing, eat healthy foods, get enough sleep, and meditate. Also, consider drinking tea to help relax your mood.

As you have noticed, all of these suggestions are connected to lifestyle changes. Yes, it is impossible to alter your routine instantly, and you can’t just change everything in one click. The process of killing anxiety naturally takes time. Do not force yourself into activities that might cause an imbalance in your overall health. Be mindful of taking things slowly.

 Can anxiety go away naturally?

The first few mild conditions of anxiety will go away on their own. Usually, it needs less than a few hours to feel emotionally and mentally relaxed again finally. However, anxiety that stays longer becomes a mental health issue. Thus, people with anxiety disorders never fully eliminate their anxiety. Fortunately, there are better ways to help them control their feelings, which is through therapy.

But therapy alone will not work if there is not much effort coming from you. Once you have decided to go on therapy, you need to commit to it fully. You don’t just attend a session for the sake of convincing yourself that you have undergone therapy. Please ensure your mental health recovery by changing your lifestyle as well. These include eating a well-balanced diet, regularly exercising, getting enough sleep, hydrating properly, and so on.

 Can anxiety go away with time?

Unfortunately, anxiety does not disappear because it pretty much stays forever. You can’t eliminate negative emotions from your brain because you have to deal with them. There is sadness, frustration, anger, and exhaustion that you need to overcome, whether you like it or not.

If you want the unwanted anxiety to go away, practice self-help tips. These include deep breathing, mindfulness meditation, and staying on an active and happy lifestyle. Though they do not work immediately, these things guarantee to provide you with long-lasting mental health benefits.

 

 Does anxiety worsen with age?

No. Anxiety complications do not automatically get worse when people age. However, studies show that most of the number of people suffering from anxiety is middle-aged and adults.

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 Is anxiety all in your head?

Some people believe anxiety to be all in the head. It’s the brain’s way of preparing them an escape from danger and helps them deal with stressful situations. However, people experience anxiety at different periods. Sometimes it can be a mild thing that they can eventually get rid of, while at times, it turns out to be a mental health disorder.

If you think your worries and fears are getting out of hand, seek immediate help. Call your doctor or visit a therapist to get a proper diagnosis. From there, you can start working your way to mental wellness.

 At what age does an anxiety peak?

Anxiety tends to peak in adults age groups are 30 to 44. They are around 23% of people reported a mental health condition within the past year.

 

 What triggers anxiety?

Many things can trigger anxiety, such as traumatic events in life or a build-up of stressful life situations. It could come from a family’s death, heartbreak in a relationship, work, or school stress. It can also come from an ongoing problem with finances.

 

 How long can anxiety last?

Anxiety attacks often rise within 10 minutes and rarely last for about 30 minutes or more. However, in some unfortunate instances during that short time, symptoms can be severe. People may experience a certain amount of terror as if they are about to die or lose control.

 

 Can you have anxiety all day?

Unfortunately, yes. Anxiety can make you feel as though things are worse than they are. Everyone’s experience of anxiety is different. But if it is diagnosed as a disorder, the feelings of fear and danger can be ongoing, which will last for an extended period that will interrupt daily routine.

 

 How does anxiety feel physically?

In some instances of short-term anxiety attacks, there is an increase in breathing and heart rate. It disrupts the needed concentrated blood flow to the brain. This very physical response is entirely normal because it prepares the mind and body for an intense situation. If the symptoms get too intense, however, there are some signs of light-headedness and nausea.

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 Are daily panic attacks normal?

Some people find the situation normal. They suffer from panic attacks on a daily or weekly basis because it results from misinterpreting physical symptoms of anxiety. However, in some unfortunate cases, panic attacks’ noticeable symptoms frequently result in social difficulties, including stigma, embarrassment, and social isolation.

 

Kid-Friendly Meditation Practices Good For The Mental Health

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With the increasing stressors we experience daily, people look for the most effective ways to lessen their effects. One technique that stands out right now is meditation. Meditation is a type of mindful practice that is good for mental health, given that it promotes self-control, reduces anxiety and stress, and builds focus. 

But are you aware that adults are not the only ones who can join this movement? Experts recommend it for kids to practice as well. This activity is something that will help them fend off negative thoughts, increase their positivity, and enhance their self-confidence. With this in mind, here are several kid-friendly meditation practices that you can teach to your child. 

Children’s Yoga

If your child is as hyper as ever, then you may opt for children’s yoga. In the world today, particularly in Western countries, people believe that meditation is a form of exercise. However, this is very different from its origin. Parents will be able to teach this belief to their kids through yoga. The reason behind this is that this technique revolves around its technicalities on meditation and relaxation. 

Teaching yoga won’t be as effective if someone does not know the science behind it. Therefore, the best way to go about this is for you to enroll your child in a yoga class for children. Here, they will know its basics and foundation, which will be their guide as they traverse through this journey of meditation. 

The Balloon

This guided meditation has a connection to a deep breathing exercise. However, what makes it kid-friendly is that it adds a bit of twist into it by incorporating some fun without being too distracting. So, how does it work? Just follow the steps below. 

 

  1. Ask your child to sit or stand somewhere quiet. Make sure that the place you’ll stay for this exercise has little to no distractions. 
  2. Once settled, let them relax their body first. Do not start this exercise if they’re still feeling a bit tensed or tired. 
  3. Let them begin taking deep inhales and slow exhales. Ensure that they do it through the nose. 
  4. Once the breathing has been sustained, start taking slow and deep breaths and fill the belly with air. Imagine this as if you are trying to set up and blow a giant balloon. Tell them to expand their stomachs at its fullest. 
  5. Let the air out from the belly through the nose. Tell your kid to ensure that their bodies are at their most relaxed state every time they release air from their “balloon.”
  6. As a parent, you may support them by adding a hissing sound every single time they exhale. It will give them imagery that they are letting the air out of the balloon. 

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Body Scanning

This practice is almost the same as that of Reiki, a Japanese practice that revolves around the concept of energy flow. What’s good about body scanning is that it is helpful to mental health. It kind of serves as a distraction to the child by switching his or her attention from the stressed mind to the tired and unenergetic body. So, how do you get started with this?

First, ask your child to lie down peacefully on a bed he or she is most comfortable with. Then, mention his or her body parts one by one to get them immersed in the meditation practice. Make sure that your voice is calm and loving to set the tone right. Then, tell them to begin doing deep breathing. 

Some children prefer playing a soothing song in the background to keep them focused on the activity. It can also be supported through imagery. Ask your kid to think of relaxing scenery such as a fresh meadow full of flowers or the sunset at the beach. You may also tell them to go to their happy place to keep them relaxed. 

Aside from these strategies, you may also incorporate conversations along the way while rubbing oil into their skin. Touching and massaging their stressed body parts will calm them. 

The best way to go about body scanning is to ask questions about the body part that you are feeling. For instance, you’re rubbing their feet. You may ask them how their feet feel, how tired they are, and if they can have their foot size changed, what would it be? These are random questions, but it helps them get connected with their body parts. 

Recorded Meditation And Meditative Music

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Recorded meditation and meditative music touch the heart and soul of kids. These are reliable practices when it comes to addressing mental health problems. For instance, if they are having a hard time sleeping or lowering their energy, then this should be your go-to strategy. 

Keep in mind that it is not your job to come up with the tracks to soothe them. Instead, let them decide. Allow them to choose the sounds or voices that will promote a comfortable space for them. Then, make it a habit to play these while they are stressed and regularly on specific time slots when they need to relax, such as before going to bed or in the afternoon after eating lunch. 

Always remember that you cannot force your children to meditate. Therefore, you must immerse them with the foundations of this practice to ensure their more profound commitment. Believe it or not, they’ll begin to enjoy the practice in no time. 

 

Encouraging The Family To Meditate

Meditation is one way to control an individual’s thoughts and redirect stress to have a clearer mind. It aids in focus and helps in decision making by managing feelings. Mediation is also an effective method for improving mental health and having a more optimistic view of life.

Many people are engaging in meditation because of the benefits it brings. Some of the advantages they enjoy are better concentration and focus and a positive state of mind. People who meditate also reported that they can work better under pressure than when they did not meditate. It is also a way to relax and improve mindfulness. Meditation is an excellent way to connect the body and the mind.

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Doing things with family is a great way to bolster the relationship with one another. Having a shared activity with family members can help in improving an individual’s skills and control over oneself. When a family engages in the same activity at a time, it can be a source of support that motivates individuals.Therefore it is ideal to encourage the family into meditation.

Understanding Meditation With The Family

In exploring an activity with the family, it is essential to explain the action. In this case, it is crucial to discuss what meditation is and what will make it a good activity for the family. Start sharing with your family why you are interested in meditation as it gives them an idea of your motivations. It may also be an avenue for you to share each other’s thoughts and views towards meditation.

Opening up with the family about an activity can give the family a view on your interests. It is a peaceful and beneficial activity with mediation, and there is a better chance that the family will find it interesting. Keep the topic as trivial and informative so the family can better grasp the ideas and understand the importance.

Be patient and rigorous in discussing this with your family because understanding meditation is not only learning about the activity but also having the opportunity to reap its benefits. It is also best to consider the discussion pace with your family’s ability to comprehend.

Exploring The Benefits Of Meditation

After understanding meditation, the family may now move on to exploring the benefits of it. The family must be willing to commit and make time for this activity. Since it is an activity that will be done together, it is best to do this when every family member is available.

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There are many benefits to meditation that your family can enjoy. From relieving stress to improving mental focus, meditation is essential in the psychological well-being of any person. Being able to control thoughts can help make decisions as this is important in the family because every decision can affect the relationship of the family members.

For families in crisis or struggles, meditation can help in keeping an optimistic perspective. It can significantly reduce anxiety and improve emotional health that can maintain a positive outlook in life. Meditation alone may not solve family problems, but it is fundamentally useful to alleviate the mental stress and emotional burden.

Doing meditation with the family will promote better relationships with one another and gather support from each other. The family will have something to do together and motivate each other to achieve the goals and reap the benefits. It can also be an excellent avenue for families to bond and share their experiences to help each other. 

Improving Meditation With The Family

The family is now engaged and can further enhance their meditation. With the basic understanding of meditation and its benefits, the family can improve their practice to achieve better results. The family may utilize different types of meditation to cater to their situation and needs.

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It is great to explore different methods and types of meditation. Variations can reduce the redundancy of steps and expand the view of the family towards meditation. It is ideal to try different combinations of reflections that will satisfy the needs and still be holistic.

In any activity, the family should have clear goals and the same commitment. With improving the meditation, make sure that the family can adjust and go with the pace. Continue to help each other and respect individual decisions. Try to support other members who may stop pursuing the goal and not force them to come back. 

In Summary

Encouraging the family to engage in meditation is a relatively easy task when done correctly. There must be a common understanding among family members. Explore what meditation is with the family to build their interest in the activity. Upon knowledge, the family can now enjoy the benefits and support of one another. Improving meditation is one right way to keep the family engaged and a more holistic approach to better well-being.

How To Make Your Home Meditation-Friendly Amid A Pandemic

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In these trying times, it seems effortless to have a chaotic mind. After all, you see or hear about the pandemic everywhere. Even if you are a naturally optimistic individual, you may slip up sometimes and be unable to keep yourself from worrying about what may happen tomorrow.

As I consult my friends about it, a few of them have suggested that I start meditating. I admittedly thought that they were trying to pull my leg, but they insisted that the activity helped them countless times. When I asked how to do it, I had been advised to make my house meditation-friendly first.

Here’s how.

Clear The Furniture In Your Meditation Area

The most practical course of action is to pick a room at home for meditation purposes. It can be your bedroom, veranda, porch, or even the living room. Then, once the choice is made, you should clear the furniture in a specific area in any of those rooms.

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Doing so ensures that you have enough space to sit down and meditate comfortably. Even if it is only several square feet, it should be fine. Besides, staring at the furniture may distract and prevent you from being in Zen mode.

Turn Off All Gadgets

iPads, smartphones, laptops, and computers are well-known sources of distraction for people who want to try meditation for the first time. Turning off the WiFi on such devices to prevent social media notifications from disturbing the peace does not always suffice. After all, texts and calls can still come in and tempt you to move away from your spot.

The only way to make your home meditation-friendly is by turning off every gadget you own. For extra measure, you can hide every electronic device deep in your closet or lock them safely in a cabinet. That guarantees that your concentration will not be broken.

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Play Calming Music All Over The Place

Folks have different ways of getting into the meditative mode. Some merely need to sit on a mat and face the sun; others like to meditate in a dark room, lit by nothing but scented candles. But for the majority, calming music is everything.

Assuming you agree with the majority, you may download instrumental songs and play them right before meditating. It will start putting your mind at ease and prepare you for your spiritual journey ahead. Furthermore, it may be able to mask external noises that may disrupt the room’s tranquility.

Ask Your Housemates To Stay Quiet Before Meditating

Whether you are a parent of young kids or have friends as housemates, there may rarely be a quiet time at home. Both children and adults can be the same, in the sense that they love chatting and staying awake for as long as possible. Hence, finding a window for meditation may not be a walk in the park.

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If you are bent on meditating amid a pandemic, you should know that there is no harm in asking nicely. Inform your housemates about your goal to meditate at a particular hour and request for them to avoid making noises then. Meditations do not typically take longer than 30 minutes, so it should not strain their lives.

Final Thoughts

It seems crazy how following the tips above have altered my life for the better. I have never seen myself as the meditating type, but I have pulled it off. It has never occurred to me that I can stay still for longer than five minutes, but impossible things become possible when you set your heart to it.

I will undoubtedly continue practicing meditation even after the pandemic is over, and so should you. Cheers to a zen life!

Why Meditating Is Essential During Quarantine

There is perhaps not a single person who does not complain about their busy schedule ever. I am guilty of doing that several times a day, and my best friend, Lena, always happens to be my shock absorber.

I did not know how Lena would react to my complaints at first. We practically grew up in the same neighborhood, so I was aware of how temperamental she could be. But as the years went on, my best friend became calmer than ever, as if nothing could faze her.

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When I asked Lena how it was possible, she said, “It’s all thanks to meditation.” I almost laughed at that answer since we used to joke about individuals who did it. (Those were not our finest hours, I know.) But then I saw how serious she was and decided to try it during the quarantine.

Below are my findings so far.

It Helps You Stay Away From Social Media Effectively

A lot of people thank God for the creation of YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok. They say that they may have gone crazy during the quarantine without them. However, they probably forget that social media channels are full of depressing content and fake news, which can make them hate staying at home more.

why-meditating-is-essential-during-quarantine

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You can avoid becoming one of those people by meditating. Doing so requires a level of stillness that you cannot get if you keep on checking your phone for notifications. Thus, to have a successful session, you have no choice but to step away from social media.

The Quietude Drowns All The Internal Noise

Whether you get coronavirus updates from your smartphone or TV, there is no way for them not to affect you. Imagine, the news anchors talk about the new deaths and positive cases every single day. At the time of writing this blog, some countries have even experienced a second wave of COVID-19 cases. It is not shocking if you worry about catching the virus in no time, given other people’s lack of discipline.

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The only thing that may silence the internal noise that you are dealing with is meditation. After all, you cannot think of anything while doing it. You merely have to listen to your heartbeat and find your center until your thoughts blend in the background. Once you come out of the meditative state, the quietude can govern your system.

You Won’t Feel Too Bored

You may have seen some articles about individuals who have started baking, writing, gardening, or doing random things during the quarantine. Some of them have always wanted to try that and are happy for the free time that the stay-at-home order has given them. But others feel too bored with streaming shows and movies, so they work on other activities.

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In all honesty, boredom tends to be a foreign word for people who meditate. You can remain in one position for hours without feeling the need to tap your fingers or hum or turn on the TV. Days can pass by, and you may never get tired of meditating.

Final Thoughts

How I look at meditation now is much different from how I used to see it. In the past, I assumed that it was a fad that socialites and hippies alike popularized. However, my eyes have since been opened to the fact that this ancient practice should be honored and passed to new generations.

Even when the quarantine ends, I will not stop meditating. Maybe I won’t be able to do it as much as I want to daily, but I can feel contented if I get to sit down and meditate every night.

(If you want to learn more things about meditating and self-soothing, you can check out BetterHelp. BetterHelp is a great venue to ease your burdens away. Mental health specialists are all ready to help those in need.)

Benefits Of Yoga And Meditation To Leadership

 

Yoga and meditation may not be the first thing that will come to mind when you imagine ways to become a good leader.  One may think that these practices are not utilized in relating to other people; instead, they are used for purely personal relaxation and inner reflection. However, yoga and meditation were found out to be a beneficial practice especially in terms of relating with others; thus, it can be both useful in attaining personal needs and enhancing one’s abilities as an effective leader. As Dana Anderson, LPC, wrote in her article, “Mindfulness helps people develop the capacity to handle what life throws at them and creates emotional resilience.”

The following are the reasons why yoga and meditation can help develop excellent leadership skills. 

 

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How Meditation Affects Students’ Performance

 

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Research suggests that the more you practice meditation, your capacity to understand and absorb information, adaptability to any situation in your life, and remembering a series of events is improved. The reason for this is that meditation is a form of exercise for our brain. It is not just one of the best brain exercise but the very best training for our brain.

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How Meditation Benefits Employees And Improves Job Performance

The pressure our job gives can be endless and exhausting. Some even think about how they will stand out from their colleagues, what risks should they take, or how they should deal with evil bosses. In short, every employee has their fair share of agony in the workplace, and all of them might not bode well for their performance.

In this case, meditation might be the best thing to offer your subordinates or colleagues. It is a technique to clear the mind and radiate positivity. Continuous meditation can improve many aspects of your life, and one of those areas includes your productivity at work.

Richard Chambers, a clinical psychologist, states, “With life speeding up and getting busier, we are bombarded with countless distractions, including of course digital technology. These things encourage distractibility and reactivity, leading to stress and impaired performance. Mindfulness offers us simple, practical ways to stay focused on what is important, reduce stress and improve our performance at whatever we do.”

Top Benefits Meditation Brings To Workplace 

Most of us are stuck behind our desks or in conference rooms for most of our day. Thus, having a short routine that helps you refresh your mind and attention can be beneficial.

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  1. Burnout Killer

Sometimes, a company’s employee of the month is also the one who feels tired and exhausted. They can be super productive at first, but it can change for some time if they don’t get the rest they need.

If you like your employees happy and healthy, always encourage them to take a break, relax, and breathe. For Robert Poynter, LPC, “Mindfulness is about being fully aware of whatever is happening in the moment. It is a moment-to-moment awareness where time slows down where you can actually focus on the task or situation that is present. Through mindfulness meditation, you are trying to achieve a mind that is stable and calm, and with practice, you will be developing and strengthening your mind in becoming calm without struggling.”

They don’t need to have special meditation techniques. A 5- to 10-minute meditation can work wonders.

  1. Employees Feel Better

In line with the first benefit, employees who feel better and happier tend to do their jobs more productively and effectively. A study also shows that employees who meditate can stay focused for a longer time and are less prone to any distraction. With this, meditation also helps in multitasking.

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  1. Improved Communication

A person with a clear train of thought expresses clear messages. Coherent and concise communication between an employee and a manager is crucial to achieving a smooth-running and complication-free business operation.

With clear communication, employees can understand instructions faster, fix issues or problems immediately, and relay information much more quickly. Meditation helps a person to relax and clear their mind, and it brings a lot of benefits in the workplace.

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  1. Increases Loyalty

Companies that offer meditation or wellness programs for their employees show they care about everyone’s emotional and mental health. From this, managers can gain their employee’s trust and loyalty. Loyal employees stick with a company for an extended period.

Simple Ways To Meditate At Work

Meditation does not always require applications or types of equipment. You can follow these simple steps to achieve relaxation and clarity.

  • Sit comfortably in your chair or lie down if your company has a lounge where you can rest.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Breathe deeply and observe a rhythmic pattern.
  • Be mindful of your breathing. Focus on each breath.
  • Be present by focusing on the sensations and sounds around you. As you become more focused, your mind will be less distracted.
  • Experiment with repeating a silent mantra. You may create your mantra or phrase to repeat during meditation. Something as simple as “Relax” or “I can do this” will do.

Meditation Apps You Must Try

We have gathered the best apps for meditation with the best quality, reliability, and great reviews.

  • The Mindfulness App
  • Headspace
  • Calm
  • Buddhify
  • Sattva
  • Stop, Breathe & Think
  • Insight Timer
  • 10% Happier
  • Breathe
  • Omvana
  • Simple Habit
  • Meditation and Relaxation Pro

Employers should give their workers a chance to start meditating. They will appreciate you for inspiring them to pursue happiness in this fast-paced world.

“Contrary to what many people believe, having a mindfulness meditation practice is not just for the most spiritual, disciplined, or mentally focused among us. It doesn’t require a magical (some might say impossible) ability to clear your mind and keep it that way for hours on end. You don’t need to be a master yogi or even own a yoga mat. Mindfulness is not just for others—it’s for me, and it’s for you, too! – Caroline Sweatt-Eldredge, LPC.